Athletic Trainer to Leave CUH for Med School


Rohndell Goodwin

Chris Cornell has been Chaminade’s head athletic trainer for six years but will leave the university to enter medical school in the fall.

Chris Cornell will be finishing his last year as the head athletic trainer here at Chaminade University. After six years, Cornell has decided to go to medical school to become a physician. It only became part of his post-Chaminade plans three years ago after a team physician encouraged him to go to medical school.  

“I’ve always been good in school, so I know how to keep up on my school work and not having a 60-hour work weeks will help out a lot,” Cornell said. “I know I will be fine.”

Cornell graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Michigan State and was one of the first students to do so. In 2010 he graduated from UNLV with a master’s degree in studying the importance of cryotherapy and how clinicians can optimize its effects. Before joining Chaminade’s athletic training program in 2011, Cornell interned for the San Francisco 49ers which at the time was one of the best athletics training staff in the NFL.

After just a few years at Chaminade, medical school came up more than once in some conversations.

Cornell’s “really good” MCAT scores led to him receiving interest from top tier schools including Harvard, Stanford and University of Southern California. Although top schools did send letters of interest, Cornell found that they were looking for the more “traditional” students right out of college. His second year applying he broadened the types of schools he applied for, including doctor of osteopathic schools which include a lot more hands on medicine along with all the traditional MD studies. This led to him choosing to attend Touro University Nevada just outside of Las Vegas.

Six years in Hawaii has led to Cornell creating a close network of friends that he will have to leave behind to pursue a new profession. He is leaving behind some of his charisma, creativeness and finding a way to always make it work. After assisting Cornell for the last three years, Rebecca Duran will be taking over his position as the head athletic trainer. Duran has learned the ins and outs of the program and is extremely thankful for the guidance and knowledge she has gained from working with Cornell.

“I’ve learned a lot from him as far as making things work and learning how to adapt to any situations thrown at you,” Duran said. “He’s very creative in that way when something arises he figures out how to make it happen.”

As the head trainer at Chaminade, Cornell worked with all 10 athletic teams and guided two assistants, Duran and Kelsey Tomaszewski.

Cornell gave Duran the opportunity to be a part of the Chaminade athletic training program, leading her to now follow in his footsteps as head trainer.

Cornell will look to stay in the sports medicine field but also has a keen interest in some cosmetic procedures such as working with children who suffer from cleft palate syndrome. His extensive background in sports medicine opens up endless opportunities. As he moves on to Las Vegas and the next stage in his career he hopes to possibly share his experience with the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders.  

With the sun always shining in Hawaii, it will be hard to forget that you lived in a great place for six years.

“I am going to miss a lot of things I use to do here like canoe paddling and always being able to go outside no matter what time of the year,” Cornell said.